Teachers play an integral role in forming our children’s character. The way in which they present lessons influence how children will think, interpret and react to certain situations and hardships as they move through life. Kristen McCulloch, of Horry County Schools in South Carolina, is a teacher who does not take this responsibility lightly.
She’s very conscious of the way she impacts their way of thought, especially when it comes to confidence, feeling included and supported.
In an effort to make her goals a reality, McCulloch put together an extremely powerful lesson. She posted about her exercise on a Facebook post, which has since inspired people everywhere. Here’s how she described the lesson:
“If you walk into our classroom now, you’ll see a bag hanging by our door. This bag contains everything our class carries to school that we consider problems or bad things in our lives. The things that distract us, sadden us, or make us angry.
Something I have found in common with every student conversation about something upsetting them is that the student believes he/ she is the only one who has a problem, hard life, family problem, whatever it may be.
So today, we all anonymously wrote down on paper what was heavy on our hearts, crumpled them up, and threw them in. I mixed them all up and students had to pick one up and we all read them out loud. I could not believe some of the things they have to deal with at home, and neither could their peers. It resulted in a lot of tears, a lot of hugs, a lot of ‘I had no idea so many people had hard things to deal with too.’
The message of the project, as I discussed with them, is that you never know the weight that people are carrying. It is so important to remember that when we interact with others. I wanted them to see that they were not alone and that they had a whole class of people who could relate and support them.
Our stories now hang by our door as a reminder to remember the ‘bag’ others may carry with them.”
Kristen’s lesson is one we all need to hear and live out daily. Share her story to spread that message!
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